Reflections

Goodness, I’ve done so much googling these past few days, my Facebook ads will be so bizarre next week. This evening I have tried to find out how much an ‘off the peg’ large sculpture might cost.

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It seems one could expect to pay about £4,000 for something quite durable, and as Zephyr is made of 3 rocks, a price of about £15,000 isn’t unreasonable + postage & packing…. so I still reckon much of the controversy stems from the wording of this:

 

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Which must have done wonders for Times of Tunbridge Wells Facebook ‘reach’.

I’ve also been looking into Section 106 money, the root of which seems to be for councils to gain something from the people who buy land, achieve planning permission, increase the value of the land, and then sell it on without building. But I could be wrong, legal documents make for daunting reading, which is why I have no plans to stand as a councillor – unlike Tunbridge Wells Alliance who have got themselves into a bit of batter over cupcakes (well, it is Royal Tunbridge Wells)

A party formed from the anger about civic centre plans and other town projects like The Belvedere and Premiere Inn – bland architectural design, lack of parking and the town’s road system are the things to concentrate on, not sulks over free cakes. I’m holding out for a free pint . Not long til the local elections though. Hopefully Twitter will start to contain real positive thoughts from all parties on a way forward, not back stabbing.

As well as looking at the background behind Section 106 payments, I’ve had a look at the public art commissioning process, and attempted to find out how much it does cost to fill Tunbridge Wells Art Gallery with a touring exhibition. This faltered as I found  a website offering advice on booking a touring exhibition and the many reports they have funded by Arts Council England . The faltering was due to current discussion on ACE funding of music . All music is equal, but some music is more equal than others. In the same way maybe that public art needs to be commissioned nationally rather than locally, opera receives more funding than grassroot music venues.

So – an unconnected stream of thoughts? New development, affordable housing, potholes, traffic jams, the homeless, section 106 money, funding, art, music, media, elections, oh, and cupcakes. That last one was obviously part of the rise in need of food banks .

Final thought – if TW council award themselves planning permission for the civic centre, will they argue with themselves about how much Section 106 money they should pay themselves, and what they will do with it?

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